The title seems rather weird, I imagine. But hopefully it will make sense eventually.
The state of the WoW community (or lack thereof) is a frequent topic of discussion. Stubborn of Sheep the Diamond recently made a post about trying to get people to find common ground in the concept of honoring the game itself. The example given was a DPS who was just auto-attacking and simply not putting forth any effort in a dungeon (and how that makes the experience worse).
However, to properly talk about this subject, I think we need to distinguish between, for lack of better terms, regular jerks and situational jerks. By that I mean there are some people who are always jerks, who leech, need on everything, troll, and generally abuse others as much as they can no matter the situation (regular jerks). But others may generally be well behaved except when put in certain situations (situational jerks). My goal here is not to excuse the situational jerks, but to understand why they may act the way they do in an effort to figure out a way to improve the situation.
Specifically, I'd like to talk about people who are regularly raiding heroic modes who do dungeons for valor (note: not all of these people are situational jerks, but some of them are).
But before we do that, let's analyze some main reasons for doing dungeons:
1. Seeing the dungeon (new stuff is cool the first few times)
2. Group content experience (people often like participating in groups)
3. Loot from the dungeon
These reasons are not exclusive, in fact the more that apply to a person, the better they're likely to behave in a group. Because they *want* to be in the dungeon. It is probably fun or at least feels rewarding. Let's break these traits down:
1, if you're new to the dungeon, you're excited about new stuff and figuring things out. Whether you wipe or how long you take probably doesn't matter very much to you. Because either way, you're doing a new or relatively new dungeon (how cool is that)?
2, if you're there because you like doing stuff in groups, you again probably don't care too much about what actually happens, you're there because you like group content.
3, if you're there for loot, wipes or delays don't affect what the bosses drop, so it's not a huge deal. Especially since you only get one shot per day in most cases with specific queues (unless you get lucky with a random queue).
4, if you're there to try to do an achievement, you probably want to work with the group and get them to do whatever the achievement is. Again, one shot per day with specific queues (this group is probably the rarest).
5, if you're there for valor, then anything that slows down the run lowers your valor per hour.
So let's go back to our serious raiders who only care about valor.
1, they've seen the dungeon probably at least a dozen times
2, they get their group content fix in a raid with people they know
3, they don't need the loot from the dungeon
4, they don't want to do achievements (they already have them or don't care about them)
5, they only care about valor/hour.
In short, this is exactly the type of person we DON'T want in the dungeon. What they want (fast valor) directly conflicts with what several other people might want (exploring and seeing stuff, achievements) and they are probably indifferent to others (group content experience, loot). In and of itself, we can already see that this is a problematic person to have in a group.
But it gets worse.
Especially with the new expansion, raiders had (just roll with the idea that they did indeed *have* to do these things, I'll have another post discussing that concept soon. If it makes you feel better, assume I said "raiders felt like they had to" because the differentiation doesn't really matter in this case) to cap conquest each week for 483 items, spam heroics to get 463s, do likely 30+ dailies each day, and valor cap each week. That's a lot to do in a short amount of time, and there are many raiders who are resentful due to this being a drastic change from Cataclysm where they just could raid each week and maybe do a few dungeons for valor cap.
It's worth noting that I am *not* talking about the people who whine about dailies yet are still honored with Golden Lotus and haven't killed a raid boss or something. I'm discussing the people who invested the several hours per day on top of additional hours raiding and likely feel burnt out and frustrated.
And now this crowd is feeling like dungeons are their best source of valor (since they're probably done with dailies and raiding only gives 400 valor with all 16 bosses dead). Worse, doing dungeons for valor seems like monotonous, tedious, terrible busy work.
So we have a group of people who are burned out and frustrated with "chores" thrown into a dungeon where they only care about getting done quickly with people who are most likely far less capable and who have different goals. Where they constantly see others who are terrible or not trying (as in, doing 15k DPS on tank and spankish fights or dying to stuff like Rattlegore's Bone Spikes) and these things worsen the sole reason the raiders are in the dungeons: valor per hour.
That just sounds like a massive powder keg to me that Blizzard has set up here.
Is it any wonder that some of them will be annoyed when things aren't constantly pulled?
Is it any wonder that some of them will say "screw it, if these people aren't trying I'll just auto-attack?"
Is it any wonder that some of them will insult and be rude to others?
Should these things happen? Of course not.
But do they happen? It's human nature. They're mad at the other players and they're mad at Blizzard for setting things up the way Blizzard did. Especially when they feel like Blizzard is expecting them to carry others.
So, back to Stubborn's idea of "Man, you need to honor the game." For this group of people that I'm talking about, I doubt you'll accomplish anything. Either they're already grinning and bearing it and honoring the game or they're at the point where all they want to do is give the game the middle finger for making them do this stuff instead of only worrying about raiding.
Again, I'm not claiming every heroic raider in a dungeon acts this way (see above about many of them just grinning and bearing it) or excusing those who do. Just offering some perspective on why it might be happening.
This, then, is the basis of the title. Some of the conflicts in dungeons (and also LFR) are due to people being there for very different and often conflicting goals with very conflicting capability. And with the valor upgrade system coming and every serious raider having to continue to cap each week, it seems this problem may only get worse. You have this whole segment of the population who thinks "Great, let's get this over with" upon starting a heroic, and that's not conducive to a good social experience (note: that feeling applies to more than just heroic raiders, but I'm trying to keep my scope limited).
I think easily 90% of heroic raiders entering these heroic dungeons have, at
best, that "let's get this over with" attitude. But when you start with
this attitude (or worse), it's easy to cross to the point of not caring
at all. Unfortunately, it's fairly common to find people doing 15k DPS on tank and spank fights
when they should be doing double that at a minimum (even when starting
heroics). And when you see that, it's very easy to adapt the mentality
of "screw it, I'll just auto-attack and alt tab to watch Youtube or
browse forums or whatever." They feel like "well, if others don't give a
damn, why should I?"
And they'd prefer to spend 20 minutes in a
dungeon with 10 of them alt-tabbed instead of 15 minutes in a dungeon
actually trying. It's a lot less effort on their part and they would
actually feel better about the 15k people, since they don't feel like
they're carrying people who don't try.
Is it hypocritical? Yes.
Does it hurt the community and dishearten anyone in the group who is trying? Yes.
people are happy to cut off their nose to spite their face. They're fine with a longer run if they don't feel like they're being taken
advantage of (despite the fact it means they're taking advantage of
Perhaps the sad thing is that the easiest way to solve this particular problem is to make it so heroic raiders don't feel obliged to ever run dungeons for valor. It won't fix jerks from other groups within the game, but it'll remove one source and probably make the entire group much happier.